Sure, he is a great idea for Premier of Ontario.
Doug Ford once privatized and replaced a garbage collection company to get rid of all the union staff members. Can you imagine what he will do with Ontario Hydro? Privatize it of course. He wants to fire everyone, and sell the asset off - which will lead to the people of Ontario having to deal with unregulated electricity prices that will no doubt skyrocket.
So how do we prevent this?
Well first you need to understand that Ontario has only 3 major political parties.
The right wing "Progressive Conservatives" or PCs.
The moderate-leftist "Liberals"
And the Uber-leftist "New Democratic Party" aka NDP.
So what happens regularly is that the two main parties, the PCs and Liberals trade places forming a government and managing the province of Ontario. The NDP has only once ever formed a government, but they often have a deciding influence on who wins.
In many elections in Ontario the "winner" often wins by a small percentage of the total vote, thus how well or poorly the NDP does often decides which of the other two parties becomes the victor.
Strategic Voting - Voting for the best candidate in the local riding to prevent a specific party from winning that party. So if historical data shows specific ridings are strongholds for 2 parties, like the NDP and PCs, then the Liberals in this scenario should actually encourage people to vote NDP in that specific riding. And preferably not even run a candidate in that riding. And the reverse, a riding where Liberals and PCs historically do well in, the NDP should not run a candidate in that riding.
Effectively both parties would be running a joint candidate representing both parties.
So here are some examples going back the last 33 years as to why this would make a difference.
Conservatives won 52 seats with 37.0% of the votes.
Liberals won 48 seats with 37.9% of the votes.
NDP won 25 seats with 23.8% of the votes.
Analysis - The 1985 election is an important year in Ontario politics because it led to a Conservative minority government. If the Liberals and NDP had cooperated that year they could have formed a Liberal minority government with the NDP propping up the Liberals, a situation the NDP would have enjoyed. Instead they propped up the PC government, a situation which led to a shortlived government that only lasted 2 years. It would have taken the Liberals and NDP to run joint candidates in only 5 Conservative ridings where one or the other party needed the boost to get them over the threshold and prevent the Conservatives from forming a minority government. It is also important to note that the Liberals won the popular vote in 1985, but thanks to vote splitting the Conservatives managed to win more seats.
Liberals won 95 seats with 47.3% of the votes.
Conservatives won 19 seats with 25.7% of the votes.
NDP won 16 seats with 24.7% of the votes.
Analysis - Ontario voters were unhappy with the PC minority government and voted in a strong Liberal majority 2 years later. The Conservatives had lost som much of their popularity they were nearly tied with the NDP, while the NDP had grown in popularity. Cooperation between the Liberals and NDP would not have been a necessity that year.
NDP won 74 seats with 37.6% of the votes.
Liberals won 36 seats with 32.4% of the votes.
Conservatives won 20 seats with 23.5% of the votes.
Analysis - That brief love affair between Ontario and NDP propping up the PCs in 1985 came back to haunt us and they went all in, handing Bob Rae's NDP a strong majority which lasted for 5 years. The PCs were still hugely unpopular and the Liberals, only 5.2% behind the NDP, also suffered under the Orange Fever that swept Ontario that year. The NDP had never formed a government in Ontario before, and it later led to disaster, "Rae Days" from striking teachers, and a general hatred of the NDP.
Conservatives won 82 seats with 44.8% of the votes.
Liberals won 30 seats with 31.1% of the votes.
NDP won 17 seats with 20.6% of the votes.
Analysis - Okay so this is a year where cooperation definitely would have benefited the NDP and Liberals. The Conservatives won a strong majority with the Liberals lagging in popularity, and the NDP doing surprisingly well under leader Bob Rae despite his huge loss in popularity. Would the PCs still have won if they had cooperated? Yes. But they might have only won a minority if the NDP/Liberals played their cards right.
Conservatives won 59 seats with 45.1% of the votes.
Liberals won 35 seats with 39.9% of the votes.
NDP won 9 seats with 12.6% of the votes.
Analysis - The NDP did poorly that year. Bob Rae had since resigned, and the NDP tried running a leader who looks and acts somewhat insane. However there was only a 5.2% vote difference between the PCs and the Liberals, enough that strategic voting on behalf of Liberals and NDP voters could have made a difference and given both the Liberals and NDP more seats - and possibly enough to close the gap, causing either a PC minority government or a Liberal minority government. During the 1995 to 2003 time period the Conservative Party privatized the resale of electricity, causing electricity rates in Ontario to skyrocket over the next 2 decades. They also caused massive teacher strikes which made "Rae Days" look like minor holidays.
Liberals won 72 seats with 46.4% of the votes.
Conservatives won 24 seats with 34.6% of the votes.
NDP won 7 seats with 14.7% of the votes.
Analysis - The Liberals won a huge majority. Mostly because the NDP candidate looked insane, but also because the Conservatives had just been in power for many years, they had become very unpopular and it was time for a change. The Liberals won by 11.8% and triple the seats of the PCs. Cooperation that year would not have been necessary to keep the Conservatives out of power, but doing so could still have benefited both parties.
Liberals won 71 seats with 42.25% of the votes.
Conservatives won 26 seats with 31.62% of the votes.
NDP won 10 seats with 16.76% of the votes.
Analysis - The Liberals won by 10.63% of the votes and almost got triple the seats of the PCs. Cooperation that year would not have been necessary to keep the Conservatives out of power, but doing so could still have benefited both parties.
Liberals won 53 seats with 37.65% of the votes.
Conservatives won 37 seats with 35.45% of the votes.
NDP won 17 seats with 22.74% of the votes.
Analysis - Now you might think, okay, that looks pretty good, but there was only a margin of 16 seats and 2.2% of the votes between the Liberals and the Conservatives. Cooperation that year would have been beneficial to safeguard keeping the Conservatives out of power, and doing so could still have benefited both parties. Since the Liberals only got a minority government the NDP ended up propping up the Liberals, a love affair that ended 3 years later.
Liberals won 58 seats with 38.65% of the votes.
Conservatives won 28 seats with 31.25% of the votes.
NDP won 21 seats with 23.75% of the votes.
Analysis - The Liberals won a nice majority with 30 seats to spare, but the vote percentages were much closer - only 7.4% apart - and could have led to a very different result had it been a tighter race. Clearly cooperation would not been a necessity, but it still could have been beneficial to both parties.
So what is the strategy?
Ideally, the Liberals and NDP should each not run any candidates in 10 ridings where the other party's candidate is more likely to beat the Conservative stronghold, for a total of 20 ridings where they could effectively block the Conservative candidate from winning.
If this strategy managed to work for just half of the ridings in past elections, that would have caused the following changes in election results:
In 1985 the Liberals would have formed a minority government instead of the Conservatives doing so, with the NDP propping up the Liberals.
In 1987 the Liberals would still win a majority, but the NDP would have been the official opposition instead of the PCs.
In 1990 the NDP would still win a majority, the Liberals would still be the official opposition, but the PCs would only have 10 seats total.
In 1995 the PCs would still win a majority, but it would be weaker by 10 seats.
In 1999 the PCs would have been denied a majority government, and the Liberals would have formed a minority government propped up by the NDP. This would be favourable to the NDP.
In 2003 the Liberals would still win a majority, but the NDP would almost double their number of seats since they did so poorly that year.
In 2007 the Liberals would still win a majority, but the NDP would increase their number of seats by 50%.
In 2011 the Liberals would win a majority instead of a minority, and the NDP would see their number of seats go up by 29%.
In 2014 the Liberals would still win a majority, but the NDP would surpass the Conservative seat total and become the official opposition.
All that is required here for these results is for the NDP and Liberals to cooperate on 20 PC stronghold ridings where Conservatives were most likely to win anyway, and for each party to win half of the ridings where their strategy was in place.
The results out of 9 elections?
2 less PC Minority or Majority governments.
2 more Liberal Minorities.
1 more Liberal Majority.
2 more NDP propping up a Liberal Minority.
2 more NDP being the Official Opposition.
9 times when the PCs would have been weaker as a political party.
The Liberals would form 22.2% more minority governments.
The Liberals would win a majority government 11.1% more often.
The NDP would prop up a Liberal minority 22.2% more often.
The NDP would be the official opposition 22.2% more often.
And lets not forget...
The PCs would be weaker every single election, even if they still manage to win a few.
The number of times the PCs manage to form a government actually drops 66.6% from 3 out of 9 times to only 1 time out of 9.
And that last aspect, a 66.6% drop in Conservative governments... wow! That is huge.
That is a win for both the Liberals and NDP, and it is a huge win for the people of Ontario resulting in a stronger economy and more benefits for the common people of Ontario (and less tax cuts for the rich and corporations who frankly are not paying their fair share).
So what do the polls currently suggest?
So strategic cooperation (or strategic voting in specific ridings) would actually be very beneficial to the Liberals and NDP in order to keep the PCs out of power and most likely form a Liberal minority propped up the NDP - which ultimately gives the NDP the power to say yes or no to every bill the Liberals propose. It forces the two parties to cooperate.
Such cooperation would be hugely beneficial to both parties.
The Liberals win more elections. The NDP end up playing kingmaker and casting the deciding vote on new bills, forcing the hands of the Liberals. It would be hugely beneficial for both.
But if voters don't want to cooperate with each other, or the parties refuse to cooperate, I guess we are doomed to have Doug Ford as premier and a Conservative majority government.
PS. Doug Ford wants to privatize Ontario Hydro, an act that will surely raise electricity prices.